Being single ain’t cheap — especially if you’re one among Tinder’s gay, lesbian and over-30s crowd.
Consumer watchdog Which? asked 200 mystery shoppers to launch real profiles on the dating app, and report on the price offered for a Tinder Plus account. Their premium service allows users added perks, such as unlimited “Likes” and “Rewinds” for mistakenly matched profiles.
But their survey revealed that some users are paying more than others per Tinder’s “personalized” pricing tier, particularly those who identify as homosexual or are 30 years and up.
Which? found that gay and lesbian users reportedly pay 10% more monthly on average than their bisexual counterparts and 8% more than heterosexual users. And for a full year’s worth of service, gay and lesbian users aged 18 to 29 allegedly paid 37% more on average than hetero users of the same age.
At the same time, middle-aged singles, specifically those aged between 30 to 49, are said to be billed at 48% more than the under-30 cohort, while those over 50 pay 46% more.
The cost of Tinder Plus ranged between about $35 and $159 (£26.09 and £116.99) in the UK-based study, according to PA Media.
The Post has reached out to Tinder for comment.
“The mystery shopping activity of less than 200 people by Which? is deeply flawed and the conclusions cannot be relied upon due to several factors,” reps told The Independent.
They invited their members to test Tinder’s pricing scheme for themselves.
“Tinder members are able to choose up to three different sexual orientations, and they can change those at any time and as many times as they like. We encourage anyone who wants to test this out for themselves to create a Tinder account, sign up for Tinder Plus and change their sexual orientation. They will see the price does not change,” they said.
Meanwhile, Which? has said that they’ve reported their findings to the UK’s Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), alleging that Tinder has violated the nation’s Equality Act of 2010, which sees that all individuals are given an equal opportunity regardless of age or sexual orientation.
The app conceded to a “discount for younger users” as they tend to be less financially liquid than older singles — which is permitted under the act, similar to discounts for students or senior citizens. But Which? says that Tinder’s pricing structure remains opaque.
“[Our research] suggests possible unlawful price discrimination, whether or not it is intentional on Tinder’s part and potentially unlawful processing of personal data. We are calling for the EHRC and the ICO to investigate this issue further. If regulators decide that Tinder’s personalized pricing is breaking the law, then the dating app giant must face strong action,” Which? director of policy and advocacy, Rocio Concha, said in a statement.
In a statement to Which?, Tinder maintained that several variables are factored into the cost of service as well as who receives promotional rates, such as geography and length of subscription.
They said, “It is categorically untrue that our pricing structure discriminates in any way by sexual preference. Any reporting or inference is patently false and outrageous.”